With awareness of Halal food expanding and its positioning as pure and hygienic food gaining solid ground, the sector has become fertile with opportunities globally. The latest SGIE Report (State of The Global Islamic Economy Report 16/17) bears testament to the growing optimism, with 80% industry respondents assessing the Halal food sector performance as ‘good’ and a staggering 37.5% rating it as ‘excellent’.

The anticipated market size seems equally reassuring too, as the Report expects the Muslim population spend on edible consumables to reach a whopping $1.9 trillion by 2021 (8.6% CAGR 2016-21). However, it is worthwhile remembering that Halal as a food choice goes beyond the Muslim consumer. Driven by the purity benchmarks and the ascending fear of meat transparency, non-Muslims across the world are opting for Halal – boosting the sector’s growth from a niche to a mainstream market.

A fact further evidenced by the way multinational food enterprises are fast expanding into the Halal zone. Right from major food suppliers such as Brazil’s BRF to top global food processing corporations like Nestle and even retail giants such as Carrefour, Walmart, and Whole Foods are venturing deep into the Halal space.

In terms of geographical mapping, Asian and Middle Eastern countries dominate – with Malaysia, the UAE and Bahrain leading the Global Islamic Economy Indicator index as per the Report – making a stronger case for Gulfood’s positioning as the ideally located epicentre of growth within the sector. Indonesia, Turkey and Pakistan are named the top 3 consumer markets, while Brazil, New Zealand and India retain their status as the top three meat exporters to the OIC countries.

For greater insights into the Halal food market and the booming opportunities, make sure to join the Halal World Food feature at Gulfood 2018.